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Returning to work after maternity and working notice

Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by kimberleyl84, May 7, 2019.

  1. kimberleyl84

    kimberleyl84 New commenter


    Sorry if this has already been asked I did search but couldn’t find the answers.

    I am returning to work after maternity leave and working my notice.

    Prior to my maternity leave I was HOD. Although I am returning and working the same hours, it seems I will no longer be HOD. I assumed this would be the case (although the head didn’t officially tell me), as it wouldn’t be consistent for the students and I’m returning for a short amount of time. Within the role I was entitled to responsibility time. I have received my timetable and responsibility time is no longer on there. The timetable mirrors a full time teacher timetable. As my contract isn’t changing, at least I hope it’s not, I assume I am still classed as a middle leader. Therefore, should have the same as any other middle leader - does anyone know where I stand with it?

    Thank you in advance for your help.
  2. ScienceGuy

    ScienceGuy Established commenter

    Irrespective of role or workplace, when returning from maternity leave you are entitled to your old job (or an equivalent). For example, when a HOD maths returned to my school a few years ago, having made plans to leave about a term later, the old HOD was kept in place and she was given other responsibilities (Whole school G and T from memory).

    It could be that your school have decided not to give your the equivalent responsibilities and are therefore not giving you the time that would go with them. A more important question would be pay - are you going to be paid your HOD salary? If not, then you should consult with your union
  3. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    From ACAS:

    If an employee takes maternity leave for six months or less, they have the right to return to their job on the same terms and conditions as before they left, if the job still exists and depending on how their employment contract defines 'the job'.

    If an employee takes maternity leave for more than six months, they still have the right to return to their old job - however, if it is not reasonably practicable to do so, they can be offered a similar job where terms and conditions must be as good.

    If you took over six months off, then I suppose they might claim that going back to a standard teaching role with your old salary is "as good" but I am not convinced. If you took less than six months off, the you are entitled to your old job back, without question. I don't think any of us can advise you further than @ScienceGuy has - consult your union if you are not happy.
    strawbs likes this.
  4. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    If you've had over six months off, they don't have to give you the specific HoD role back, as Piranha says. Presumably pay is staying the same - if not you definitely argue. It might be argued that you should have some responsibility (and time to do it), so that your status and conditions remain the same. If you're only there for the rest of this term, perhaps they could give you some specific one-off task.

    The extra non-contact time was to complete your role, not reward for being a middle leader, so arguably if they are not asking you to do anything specific, there's no need for it. On the practical side, presumably somebody has been acting-up into the HoD role, and the person taken on to cover your leave was teaching a full timetable, so who is going to teach the extra lessons if you don't?

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